Milton Bradley is back with the Mariners officially. He was activated from the restricted list and to make room for him on the 25-man roster, reliever Sean White was sent to Triple A Tacoma. He will start in left field tonight and bat sixth.
He spoke briefly with the media. Here's his opening statement.
"I'm excited to be back. I'm glad to be back part of the team again and playing. I'd like to thank the organization for the support and I'm forever grateful for them allowing me this time to get myself together, get back on track, get some help for the stresses and things that have been creating unhealthy and unpleasant thoughts and feelings I've been having to allow me to have better focus on the game that I love and enjoy playing."
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"To the fans, Seattle fans have been ever so supportive before and during it. There's been an overwhelming amount of mail and cards I've received being supportive and fans get well wishes everywhere Ive been around town. I can't thank the fans enough. It's been great. It's really helped this process.
I'm just looking forward to getting back. I don't have all the answers. I'm not saying I'm cured or whatever you may call it. But I'm working ever so hard and I'm committed to this process and it's going to be an on-going thing. It' s the best thing for me. And I'm glad I took this time.What was exactly troubling you?
The Mariners have been made aware of my situation. I've been pretty open with Jack and Wak and the organization. They're aware of the things I've been dealing with on a personal level so we're squared and straight as far as that goes.
GM Jack Zduriencik spoke with the media shortly thereafter.
He's doing his very best. This is a time that was necessary for him. A process he felt that he had to go through. Where he stands right now is that he's ready to play baseball. He doesn't have all the answers as he said to you. He's just to thankful that most people have been behind him on this and allowed him this time.
Have you noticed a change in him?
It's early in the process. But he looks in good spirits and he's able to play baseball again.
Zduriencik said that Bradley will continue to receive help for the rest of the season. He wouldn't label it counseling. Bradley took a lot of batting practice at Safeco and "kept himself in reasonably good shape."
But he hasn't seen live pitching since May 4th. So there could be some rust.
Manager Don Wakamatsu said he will try and find playing time for both Bradley and Michael Saunders in left field depending on the situation.
"I think we are just going to look at it every day and look at the match-ups and do the best we can," he said. "You are starting to see a trend with Saunders. He had a nice run in Baltimore. We talked about giving him time off against left-handers and maintaining facing right-handers. Now that we have a little flexibility on the bench, we'll just pick and choose and try to make the best match-up."
To get Bradley back in the flow, will you use Bradley at DH when Saunders in LF?
"Yeah, we're looking at both at DH and playing left field just to see how everything goes and what works best for the club and what works best for him."
Milton Bradley is out taking early batting practice with the Mariners as I type this. Remember Bradley was placed on the restricted list during the Mariners last homestand on May 5th. Part of the rules of being on the restricted list meant that Bradley wasn't allowed to participate in any team activities or be in uniform.
So since he's taking BP and in uniform, it appears that he is being taken off the restricted list.
Which means the M's need to make a roster move.
Who will be the one to go? It won't be Ken Griffey Jr., who is also taking early BP, along with Mike Sweeney, Michael Saunders, Matt Tuiasosopo, Ryan Langerhans, Josh Wilson and Matt Tuiasosopo.
Could it be a reliever being sent out?
Could Jose Lopez's injury bad enough to warrant a DL stint?
Who would you like to see removed from the roster for Bradley?